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The ‘Stang Express The Newspaper of North Shore Middle School Volume 3 • Issue 3 • February 2013

Seems like everyone has a gun these days, but are they doing more harm than good? - page 6 VOLUME 3 ISSUE 3 • FEBRUARY 2013



The ‘Stang Express • Feb. 2013

Co-Editors-in-Chief Opinion Editor News Editor Features Editor Sports Editors


Entertainment Ed. Photo Editor Social Media Mgr




In wake of the Newtown shooting, district personnel look at school safety. by CHRISTINE CABANG

4 Pre-AP English students visit houston holocaust musuem

Eighth graders experience what it was like during World War II for Europe’s Jews. by HAILIE RUSSELL

5 What goes on the internet, stays on the internet

More teens are using social media in a bad way. by BRYANT BADIE

FEATURES 8 POLE REVERSAL: Another world-ending scare or is it just normal? Predictions have everyone paying attention to every scare...should you worry? by MARIA RENTERIA

9 BULLYING: Is it kids just being kids or something worse?

Research proves that bullying has an effect on teenagers. by MABEL IDICULA


Discover the fascinating world in the pages of a good book. by SARA HINSHAW-HATTEN

13 TEACHERS AND GUNS: HOW BAD CAN IT BE? Texas school districts arm teachers in wake of shooting. by CINDY MAI

13 Are schools doing their part to protect students? Do you feel safe here at school? by EMILY LIM



SPORTS 14 Mustangs dominate Alice Johnson

Seventh graders put on a clinic versus the Hornets at home. by TAALIYAH PORCHIA

15 Mustang defense sets up big plays, leads team to victory against Yellow Jackets Eighth graders have big first quarter, blow out Galena Park. by VICTOR DAVILA & ULISES SALAZAR

17 Lady Mustangs participate in first ever nba invitational

Eleven talented North Shore players take on a big challenge. by LEAH MAXWELL

ENTERTAINMENT 18 Are you getting the best possible sound?

There are lots of headphones out there...we take a look a two. by ENRIQUE GONZALEZ

19 Catching Fire heats up HUNGER GAMES series Second part to the Hunger Games doesn’t disappoint. by CRYSTAL ORTEZ

LIKE US! Scan this with your smartphone to see the North Shore MS Journalism Facebook page and download the newspaper in color!

Cover Story Page Design

Bryant Badie Cindy Mai Emily Lim Ivon Lopez Christine Cabang Leah Maxwell Victor Davila Crystal Ortez Madison Mericle Emily Lim Daisy Estrada Christine Cabang Sara Hinshaw

Writers Martin Batrez Kenny Ma Joanne Cobos TaAliyah Porchia Daisy Estrada Makenna Pouland Cristal Garcia Maria Renteria Enrique Gonazlez Leonardo Reyes Sara Hinshaw Fermina Rodriguez Mabel Idicula Hailie Russell Ulises Salazar Photographers Melanie Gomez Madison Mericle Reagan Nunez Adviser Principal Superintendent

Mr. Ron Burke Mr. Paul Drexler Dr. Angi Williams


Mailing address: 120 Castlegory Houston,Texas 77015 Phone: (832) 386-2600 Website: Email:


Letters to the editor will be accepted. Letters may be submitted in Room C107 or placed in the mailbox of Mr. Burke. All letters must be signed. Names will be published. Letters must not contain personal attacks against an individual and may be edited.


The ‘Stang Express is a student publication distributed to the students, teachers, and parents of North Shore Middle School and Galena Park ISD. Opinions expressed are the opinions of the student writers and are not necessarily the opinions of the Galena Park ISD. The ‘Stang Express is a member of the Interscholastic League Press Association and the Columbia Scholastic Press Assocation. The newspaper earned an Award of Distinguished Merit and won a prestigious Silver Star Award from the ILPC in April 2012 and was recently awarded a Gold Medalist Certificate by the CSPA in New York City and is a 2013 Crown Finalist.

Social studies students prepare for


Attorneys spend time with two groups of eighth graders ahead of big event downtown by MADISON MERICLE On Feb. 15 Mr. Banks’ second and ninth period social studies classes will head downtown for their annual mock trial. This will be a learning experience for the students. A lot of preparation has been going into this, especially this year, because two classes get to participate instead of just one. “This is important for the students so they know how the justice system works, some may even choose this as a career for themselves,” says Mr. Banks. It’s a lot of work but it’s well worth it for the students. Eighth graders have been preparing for the mock trial these past couple weeks by meeting with actual attorneys Lucy Fisher and Amelia Burt from the Houston Bar Association, who have been running students through their parts of the trial and helping them learn the meanings of certain court terms so they may use them if necessary for their argument. “Mock trial is important because it

teaches students to be responsible and gives them the confidence to speak in front of large crowds,” says eighth grader Lexxi Pritchard. Whenever the attorneys come they spend the entire class period going over the mock trial packets. The attorneys also teach students how to act in a courtroom and go over the trial for a total of seven class periods. Each lawyer is assigned 3 kids each to work with. The students participating were also assigned parts. The defense attorneys are: Antoine Fontillas, Daisy Sifuentes, Lexxi Pritchard and Mariana Hernandez. The prosecutors are: Christine Cabang, Deja Montgomery, Mabel Idicula, and Kendra Kitts. The judge is Madison Bellard, the Bailiff is Candito Huerta and the clerk is Olivia Macuba. “You may watch TV shows like CSI where something shocking happens and everybody gasps, but that doesn’t happen. There are NO surprises in court,” said attorney Lucy Fisher. Students also worked on what both sides of the court

and the witnesses are supposed to do whenever Judge Madison Bellard makes her entrance. The students also must pick a case that they need to try. “They almost always pick murders,” says Mr. Banks. The case they’ve chosen for this year’s mock trial is a murder case in which Kenny Ma ‘murdered’ Mary Clark. The defense attorneys and the prosecutors were all asked to write down all questions they will be asking the witnesses on the day of the mock trial. All the work the students are doing right now will pay off on the day of the mock trial. “A judge will come and watch and sometimes they’ll [the judge] take the student portraying the judge back into their chamber and dress them up in a robe. Parents are also welcome to come,” said Mr. Banks. Sadly, the mock trial will take place at 8:30 A.M on a Friday so we can’t go out and support our classmates, but if you see any of them in the hall be sure to wish them good luck!

Perfect might not exist but perfect attendance? Most come to school every day but what would happen if we had perfect attendance? by HAILIE RUSSEL & FERMINA RODRIGUEZ Are you coming to school everyday? If you’re not, you need to start because being at school benefits you in many ways. School helps you by teaching you about things that you wouldn’t normally learn by sitting in front of the television. If you’re not here at school, teachers can’t teach you what they have prepared, and you’ll probably regret not attending. The material taught in school will help you in the future, and if you’re not learning you won’t have the knowledge you will need to help you later on in life. There are some students who think that it’s a waste of time to come to school, and take the privilege of getting a good education for granted when they should really be grateful because a lot of children don’t have the advantages kids here do. “I think kids should be more grateful because other kids around the world don’t

have the opportunity to be well educated,” said seventh grader Raquel Sanchez. To all those students who skip: instead of going out with your friends and skipping you should be the bigger person and stay in class to learn something. Also, it’s no use to skip because the school calls your parents to inform them that you missed a class and the computer tracks everything. Coming to school every day is beneficial for the school also. Every student that comes to school and is on time helps increase the money that is brought in from the state government. The money from the state is used to fund field trips, dances, buy supplies for the nurse, and electronics like the computers that everyone uses. Each student that misses a day of school means less money granted to the campus. “Almost 3.14% of the students miss school everyday, and 98.86% of the students come to school,” said Mrs. Bryant, the attendance clerk. As you can see, our

Avg. absences per day: 50

school is doing pretty well on attendance, but we could much better if all students actually came to school more often. Our principal would like 100% of the students here, so why not have a 100% attendance? As you can see, a lot of students should be grateful for all the knowledge they receive. Instead of coming to school and messing around all day, we should come to school everyday to learn. Our teachers come to school every day and work hard to teach us and prepare us for the next grade. “Mr. Burke is awesome because he comes to school everyday and makes class come alive,” said eighth grader Alberto Castellano. Seventh grader Jesica Sifuentes said, “Mr. Johnson is an awesome teacher because he actually cares about his students, and takes teaching to the next level.” We should return the favor to our teachers by coming to school everyday and learning instead of playing around.

Avg. absences per week: 250 Number of students: 1353 VOLUME 3 ISSUE 3 • FEBRUARY 2013



Pre-AP English students visit

HOUSTON’S HOLOCAUST MUSEUM Eighth graders experience what it was like during World War II for Europe’s Jews



Imagine being forced out your home and shoved into a railcar without any explanations. Then arrive at a concentration camp to work, sleep on wood, starved, and tortured just because of your religion. Well that’s what happened to six million Jews during the 1940’s by the Nazis. Some were starved to death, put in gas chambers, or shot. Very few Holocaust victims survived to share their stories about how horrible life was in the concentration camps. Some of these stories are told at the Houston Holocaust Museum and include many other things like photographs and items from actual concentration camps. Eight classes of eighth grade Pre-AP English students were given the opportunity to go on a field trip to the Holocaust Museum to honor the millions of Jews killed and give them the chance to better understand life in the camps. They’re reading a book called “Night” by Elie Wiesel, a Holocaust survivor, in their English classes. Learning about the Holocaust educates students about how dangerous hatred and prejudice can be. Eighth grader Jessica Rodriguez said, “The Holocaust is important to learn so the

future won’t repeat any of these gruesome and horrific scenes.” The tour guide at the museum told students about “The Triangle”. In the triangle there are the roles of the bystander, perpetrator, victims, and the rescuers. Our generation is expected to be rescuers in order to not repeat what happened roughly 80 years ago. When students arrived at the museum they were separated into three groups. One group started the tour in the Memorial Room. This room is dedicated to the Holocaust victims. On the walls are tiles with names of the Holocaust victims dedicated for them by their families. As students took a moment to honor the victims, the tour guide explained the meaning of the paintings in the room and how they resemble time during the Holocaust. Each student was asked to take a rock to put on a memorial stone in the Children’s Garden on the way to a railcar that was more than likely used to transport people during the Holocaust. As students walking into the railcar the temperature was about 30 degrees Fahrenheit. “My favorite part of the museum was the rail car, it made me real-

The plates located just outside the entrance of the museum represent entire communities that were wiped out by the Nazis during the Holocast. The cylinder references the chimneys of the crematoria used by the Nazis to burn the bodies of their victims in their killing centers and concentration camps.



ize how scared and freezing the victims were” said 8th grader Nathaly Montelongo. Students barely lasted ten minutes in the railcar but up to 100 Holocaust victims had to stay in these freezing, crowded railcars for five or more days without food or warm clothing. Another group starting tour the main exhibit of the museum. This part is full of photographs, videos of the victims working at the camps, information about how the Holocaust started, quotes from survivors, and items donated by victims and their families. Upon entering this part of the museum there are hundreds of pictures of Jewish families and our guide explained how they were treated. Other pictures were of Nazis doing cruel things to the Jews. Further down was an example of the striped uniform the victims had to wear which was donated to the museum by a Holocaust survivor. At the end of the main exhibit is a huge room with a big screen that showed a video about what the Holocaust survivors remembered about their time at the camps. The video was 30 minutes long called “Voices”. This video is very heartbreaking to watch as the survivors describe the horrible memories of when they got sent away to the camps and taken away from their families. “The Holocaust Museum helped me understand what the Nazis did to the Jews and who Adolf Hitler was,” Said eighth grader Daisy Sifuentes. Mr. Burke said that history has a way of repeating itself and when we are educated about things like this is can help us prevent it from happening again. Their field trip to the Holocaust Museum really helped the eighth graders better understand what the Jews had to go through and why it’s so important to know this horrific part of history. Students will soon participate in a project where they will create butterlies based on the poems they read from “I Never Saw Another Butterfly” and will donate their butterflies to the museum for their upcoming exhibit that remembers the 1.5 million children who perished during the Holocaust.

Texas sees big jump in flu Perspective cases, hospitalizations What goes on the Flu season storms into Houston area early, spreads quickly Are you one of the many who have been infected with the Influenza? You’re probably wondering what this means even after hearing doctors and nurses mention it. The influenza, also known as the flu, is a highly contagious virus marked by symptoms such as fever, pain and aches, and respiratory inflammation. The Centers for the Disease Control and Prevention reported that on average, 5% to 20% of the U.S. population gets the flu and more than 200,000 people are hospitalized from seasonal flu-related complications. The state of Texas is experiencing a widespread outbreak of the flu this year. Teachers in Texas are making sure that all school desks, water fountains and doorknobs are clean and they also make sure that the students clean their hands often. Houston’s doctors report that this year’s flu season is the worst one in years. Local emergency rooms at hospitals are packed with patients with the flu or fever-like symptoms. There are different ways to prevent the flu. The CDC stated that the best way to prevent seasonal flu is by getting a seasonal flu vaccination each year. The main way people get the flu is by person to person contact. It’s best to not share any utensils such as forks or also cups used to drink because the other person’s germs will pass down to your system. “Washing your hands with soap and water frequently and using hand sanitizer can help prevent it,” said Nurse Nguyen,

the school nurse. Sometimes, it’s hard to tell if you have the flu. One way to find out if you have it is by watching out for the symptoms. The CDC reports that the flu can cause mild to severe illness, and at times can lead to death. The most common symptoms are fever, chills, coughing, and headaches. At most times, if you are experiencing any of these, it may be best that you go to the doctor to make sure you’re not diagnosed with the flu. The flu spreads around the world rapidly. The CDC reported that in over 30 years, between 1976 through 2006, estimates of flu-associated deaths in the United States range from a low of about 3,000 to high of about 49,000 people. This season, Texas has a high level of activity of influenza-like illnesses (ILI). These activity levels are based on the percent of outpatient visits in a hospital in a state due to ILI and they are compared to the average percent visits that occur during spring and fall with little influenza activity. There is a widespread of the flu going through 47 states including Texas. The flu experience has risen and this is the worst flu season Texas has experienced in years. The best way to prevent the flu is to get the seasonal flu shot. You can get it at any local Walgreens, Kroger, CVS Pharmacy, a local doctor, and sometimes at a local school. Protect yourself from the flu and if you experience the symptoms, it would be best if you head to the doctor to see if you get diagnosed with it.



internet, stays on the internet

by BRYANT BADIE Social Media has taken over the youth of America. Every time you look around, you see a teen with a cell phone, head down, looking at the phone instead of looking around and seeing what’s going on in the real world. You’ll never see what students/teens are actually thinking. You also don’t see what they are texting, tweeting, posting etc. They may be talking about harming someone/something, talking about you, or maybe they’re just innocently sharing their personal information with everyone on Facebook, Twitter, or any other social site. What some students don’t understand is whatever you post on the internet, stays on the internet. For example, on Jan. 18, 2013, a North Shore Senior High School student was arrested for making a terroristic threat against the school. He tweeted the night before, “Who wants to help me blow up the school tomorrow?” The situation was so serious the FBI alerted the district about it. Three officers arrested the teen at his home, before school. This student is now facing felony charges, his actions will cause him to lose chances at going to a certain colleges or getting a certain job. Other things such as, voting rights, may also be taken away. Some students may be playing around when doing something like this and want you to take it as a joke. Some might think it’s funny, but others will take it seriously. This can cause someone to report you, and you may end up in serious trouble. Parents and guardians need to start teaching and reminding their kids to be watchful of what they text/tweet/post, etc. After you hit send, it never goes away. If it’s bad, someone may report you, or you may get caught by governmental authorities. If it goes to desperate measures then you may end up paying a large fine, going to jail, or even prison. Just remember the next time you type something, read it and think... Will this get me in trouble? If you have any doubts, don’t post it! VOLUME 3 ISSUE 3 • FEBRUARY 2013




In wake of the Newtown shooting, district personnel look at school safety

From the age of four, we go to school. Every weekday we get up early and head to a place full of friends and teachers, and as we are being taught there is a small sense of safety. After all, we are in a school full of at least a hundred people. On Dec. 14, 2012, teachers and students of Sandy Hook Elementary thought they’d go home after another great day, but some of them never made it home because a man named Adam Lanza went into the school after shooting his own mother, and shot 20 children along with 6 teachers. Twenty-eight lives were lost, including his own. Twenty-seven people who still had many days ahead of them got their future snatched away by one man with a gun. You would think that a person would have more humanity than that. It was only 11 days before Christmas. This was not the first time something like this has happened in the U.S. Since 1999, there have been 29 mass shootings, from the Columbine shooting to the shooting during the Batman movie, not including this new one. There have also been many shootings every day in the streets, in our neighborhoods, maybe even in our own houses. Where does the carnage end? Apparently, it has not ended because there

have been over 4,000 deaths related to firearms. According to The Daily Beast, in Chicago alone, over 4,000 people, age 21 or younger have been shot in the last four years. That’s over a thousand people per year average. Thankfully, the people in Washington have heard our cry for help. The act we as a nation have to execute is “to come together and take meaningful action,” as President Obama suggested after the Newtown massacre, to change the Constitution. Although actions do need to be taken, what sort of actions will satisfy the needs of our nation? If you take away guns period, that will affect the economy and anger a lot of people. “Why would they take away guns, you can’t protect yourself then,” said eighth grader Jose Galdamez. “[After all] the second amendment was written because the British wouldn’t let the colonists have guns to protect themselves,” said Mrs. Davis, an eighth grade social studies teacher. According to The Berkshire Eagle, there are approximately 300 million guns at large in the U.S. There are approximately 310 million men, women and children in the U.S., including children 5 years old and younger. Basically one-for-one. What good will tightening the gun laws do? “The people who need to be banned

from guns already have broken bigger more important laws. So why would this stop them? It didn’t stop the man who killed all those kids even though guns aren’t allowed on school property. The law would only stop people who actually listen to the laws,” said eighth grader Kevin Diaz. The recent tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary sparked up another long debated issue, the safety of the kids at school. Sandy Hook Elementary was considered a safe school. Newtown, Connecticut was a quiet town, and the school took every precaution they could. They had lockdown drills and you had to go through a lot to even get admitted into the school, but even through all their precautions, a tragedy like this occurred. Right now people are thinking and shouting out solutions, but are they just all talk? After the Columbine shooting and every other shooting that has occurred involving students, there is always a time period where parents, students, and administrators are ready to take on the cause to stop this and for a moment in time it becomes the number one priority. After a while though,people tend to get lazy and the tragedy that occurred becomes only a horrible reminder of what could happen in our own schools.Although some schools Continued on next page

BULLET POINTS: A LOOK AT STATISTICS OF GUNS & VIOLENCE More than 1 out of 10 male high school students bring a weapon, such as a gun or knife, to school each month. More than one-third of American teens believe that they have easy access to a handgun. 42% of young men and 29.8% young women responded in a survey that, “If I really wanted to, I could get a handgun.” 6


Nearly 1.7 million children under the age of 18, live in homes with firearms that are both loaded and unlocked in the United States. On average, 45 children and teens are shot every day in America. Over fears of students concealing weapons, some schools have implemented a “No Backpack Rule.”



Continued from next page put up cameras and they install alarm systems, what could’ve stopped Adam Lanza? He didn’t go through all those locked doors or through the security system. He simply shot a window. “There is not a single safety measure that anyone could have put in place at that school that would have stopped what happened,” said Bill Bond, the school safety specialist for the National Association of Secondary School Principals. Sandy Hook did everything they could. They stayed in lock down, the administrators fought valiantly for their students, but Adam Lanza still murdered 20 kids and 7 adults. So what are we supposed to do? Our administrators here at North Shore are already at work trying to make our school more safe, more secure. “We’re going to a lot of meetings about safety. Recently, we went to Sheriff Garcia’s town hall meeting. We are planning a shut down to review the procedures,” said Mr. Drexler, our principal. Even the points of entrance in the school that used to be open, such as the door leading to and from the portables are being taken care of. “The doors will be locked, and key cards will be issued to students who need to travel to the portables soon,” said Mr. Drexler. “The people who need to be Almost every banned from guns already adult is throwing everything they have broken bigger more important laws. So why would can to keep this school safe. this stop them? It didn’t stop “We have a the man who killed all those group of people kids even though guns aren’t called BUILD, it’s a group of allowed on school property. staff members The law would only stop assigned to a people who actually listen to specific job in the laws,” the case of an - 8th grader Kevin Diaz emergency and they also talk about the issues happening today,” said Mr. Eagleton, one of our assistant principals. There are small things that we have always done at North Shore that keep us safe like having two or more teachers in the hallways during transition time. Everyone forgets to mention the cameras all over the school that record everything that happens in the hallways. With all these precautions could something like what happened at Sandy Hook happen here? Truthfully, the answer is yes something like that could happen here and district and school administration are working hard to prevent it.

Dec. 14, 2012 – Newtown, Connecticut Feb. 27, 2012 – Chardon, Ohio Feb. 23, 2012 – Port Orchard, Washington Feb. 21, 2012 – Murfreesboro, Tennessee Jan. 4, 2012 – Brownsville, Texas Nov. 15, 2011 – Berkeley, California Oct. 25, 2011 – Fayetteville, North Carolina Oct. 14, 2011 – Baltimore, Maryland Aug. 26, 2011 – Harper Woods, Michigan Aug. 8, 2011 – Mandeville, Louisiana May 23, 2011 – Pearl City, Hawaii May 23, 2011 – Cleveland, Ohio April 19, 2011 – Houston, Texas April 15, 2011 – Los Angeles, California April 13, 2011 – Apopka, Florida April 12, 2011 – Nashville, Tennessee April 6, 2011 – Opelika, Alabama March 31, 2011 – Houston, Texas March 25, 2011 – Martinsville, Indiana Feb. 23, 2011 – Los Angeles, California Feb. 14, 2011 – Murfreesboro, Tennessee Feb. 6, 2011 – Youngstown, Ohio Feb. 2, 2011 – Placerville, California Jan. 18, 2011 – Los Angeles, California Jan. 5, 2011 – Omaha, Nebraska Dec. 14, 2010 – Panama City, Florida Dec. 6, 2010 – Aurora, Colorado Dec. 4, 2010 – Garden City, South Carolina Nov. 29, 2010 – Chicago, Illinois Nov. 28, 2010 – Marinette, Wisconsin, Oct. 11, 2010 – Fairfield, California Oct. 25, 2010 – Selma, Alabama Oct. 8, 2010 – Carlsbad, California Oct. 3, 2010 – Elizabeth City, North Carolina Sept. 28, 2010 – Austin, Texas Sept. 21, 2010 – Columbia, South Carolina Sept. 16, 2010 – Moss Bluff, Louisiana Sept. 7, 2010 – Las Cruces, New Mexico Sept. 7, 2010 – Detroit, Michigan Aug. 18, 2010 – Omaha, Nebraska May 18, 2010 – South Gate, California April 29, 2010 – Portsmouth, Virginia March 23, 2010 – Baton Rouge, Louisiana March 9, 2010 – Columbus, Ohio Feb. 23, 2010 – Littleton, Colorado Feb. 19, 2010 – DeKalb, Illinois Feb. 12, 2010 – Huntsville, Alabama Feb. 10, 2010 – Knoxville, Tennessee Feb. 5, 2010 – Madison, Alabama Jan. 20, 2010 – Livingston, Alabama Jan. 7, 2010 – Phoenix, Arizona Dec. 11, 2009 – Shreveport, Louisiana Dec. 8, 2009 – Woodbridge, Virginia Dec. 2, 2009 – Brockton, Massachusetts Nov. 17, 2009 – Boston, Massachusetts Nov. 16, 2009 – Dallas, Texas Nov. 6, 2009 – Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Nov. 1, 2009 – Pineville, Louisiana Oct. 24, 2009 – Memphis, Tennessee Oct. 20, 2009 – Long Beach, California Oct. 8, 2009 – Southold, New York Sept. 16, 2009 – Henrico, Virginia Sept. 14, 2009 – Grand Rapids, Michigan Sept. 8, 2009 – Stamford, Connecticut Sept. 3, 2009 – Atlanta, Georgia Sept. 2, 2009 – San Bruno, California July 10, 2009 – Houston, Texas June 24, 2009 – Parkersburg, Iowa June 9, 2009 – Lexington, Kentucky May 18, 2009 – Cambridge, Massachusetts May 18, 2009 – Larose, Louisiana May 4, 2009 – West Covina, California May 1, 2009 – Sheboygan, Wisconsin April 26, 2009 – Hampton, Virginia April 10, 2009 – Dearborn, Michigan April 9, 2009 – Dove Creek, Colorado March 10, 2009 – Jacksonville, Florida Nov. 15, 2008 – St. George, Utah Nov. 12, 2008 – Fort Lauderdale, Florida Oct. 29, 2008 – Big Bear, California Oct. 26, 2008 – Conway, Arkansas Oct. 13, 2008 – San Antonio, Texas Sept. 2, 2008 – Willoughby, Ohio Aug. 29, 2008 – Portland, Oregon Aug. 26, 2008 – Opelousas, Louisiana Aug. 21, 2008 – Knoxville, Tennessee July 24, 2008 – Phoenix, Arizona

April 30, 2008 – Boca Raton, Florida April 29, 2008 – Washington, DC April 24, 2008 – Omaha, Nebraska March 31, 2008 – Hayward, California March 29, 2008 – Chicago, Illinois March 7, 2008 – Chicago, Illinois March 6, 2008 – Mobile, Alabama Feb. 28, 2008 – Miami Gardens, Florida Feb. 27, 2008 – Little Rock, Arkansas Feb. 23, 2008 – Jonesboro, Arkansas Feb. 14, 2008 – DeKalb, Illinois Feb. 12, 2008 – Oxnard, California Feb. 11, 2008 – Memphis, Tennessee Feb. 8, 2008 – Baton Rouge, Louisiana Feb. 4, 2008 – Memphis, Tennessee Jan. 22, 2008 – Washington, DC Jan. 18, 2008 – Las Vegas, Nevada Jan. 16, 2008 – Cleveland, Ohio Jan. 16, 2008 – Charlotte, North Carolina Jan. 15, 2008 – Putnam City, Oklahoma Jan. 10, 2007 – Asheville, North Carolina Dec. 17, 2007 – Gibsonton, Florida Dec. 11, 2007 – Las Vegas, Nevada Dec. 11, 2007 – Oakland, California Nov. 29, 2007 – Lagrangeville, New York Nov. 26, 2007 – Holland Patent, New York Nov. 20, 2007 – Beaufort, South Carolina Oct. 25, 2007 – Saginaw, Michigan Oct. 12, 2007 – Portland, Oregon Oct. 10, 2007 – Cleveland, Ohio Oct. 10, 2007 – Norristown, Pennsylvania Sept. 30, 2007 – Memphis, Tennessee Sept. 28, 2007 – Oroville, California Sept. 21, 2007 – Dover, Delaware Aug. 4, 2007 – Newark, New Jersey June 29, 2007 – Dallas, Texas April 18, 2007 – Huntersville, North Carolina April 16, 2007 – Blacksburg, Virginia April 10, 2007 – Gresham, Oregon March 24, 2007 – Greensboro, North Carolina March 7, 2007 – Midland, Michigan Jan. 26, 2007 – Los Angeles, California Jan. 3, 2007 – Tacoma, Washington Dec. 12, 2006 – Springfield Township, PA Nov. 9, 2006 – Clinton, South Carolina Oct. 9, 2006 – Joplin, Missouri Oct. 2, 2006 – Nickel Mines, Pennsylvania Sept. 29, 2006 – Cazenovia, Wisconsin Sept. 27, 2006 – Bailey, Colorado Sept. 17, 2006 – Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania Sept. 14, 2006 – Green Bay, Wisconsin Aug. 30, 2006 – Hillsborough, North Carolina Aug. 24, 2006 – Essex, Vermont March 21, 2005 – Red Lake Reservation, MN March 16, 2005 – Bellflower, California March 2, 2005 – Cumberland City, Tennessee Dec. 10, 2004 – Nine Mile Falls, Washington March 17, 2004 – Joyce, Washington Feb. 11, 2004 – Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Feb. 2, 2004 – Washington, D.C. Jan. 21, 2004 – Henderson, Nevada Nov. 8, 2003 – Sugar Land, Texas Sept. 24, 2003 – Cold Spring, Minnesota Sept. 16, 2003 – Hopkinsville, Kentucky Sept. 10, 2003 – Fort Worth, Texas Sept. 5, 2003 – San Diego, California April 24, 2003 – Red Lion, Pennsylvania April 14, 2003 – New Orleans, Louisiana Oct. 29, 2002 – Tucson, Arizona Oct. 7, 2002 – Bowie, Maryland Jan. 15, 2002 – New York, New York Nov. 12, 2001 – Caro, Michigan May 15, 2001 – Ennis, Texas March 30, 2001 – Gary, Indiana March 22, 2001 – Granite Hills, California March 7, 2001 – Willamsport, Pennsylvania March 5, 2001 – Santee, California Jan. 17, 2001 – Baltimore, Maryland Sept. 26, 2000 – New Orleans, Louisiana May 26, 2000 – Lake Worth, Florida May 11, 2000 – Prairie Grove, Arkansas March 10, 2000 – Savannah, Georgia Feb. 29, 2000 – Mount Morris Township, MI Dec. 6, 1999 – Fort Gibson, Oklahoma Nov. 19, 1999 – Deming, New Mexico May 20, 1999 – Conyers, Georgia April 20, 1999 – Littleton, Colorado



From Columbine to Newtown, there have been a total of 184 school shootings. See the full list below:




Another world-ending scare or is it just normal? Predictions have everyone paying attention to every scare...should you worry? by MARIA RENTERIA


The Mayans ‘predicted’ that the end of the world arrived on Dec. 21, 2012. They were wrong but now, some scientists are predicting how the world might come to its end. Imagine Earth. Inside, Earth has a core, which has an iron inner core that is surrounded by magma, and an outer core, which creates a magnetic field, due to the daily turning of Earth. Now imagine a big bubble surrounding Earth, which would be the ‘magnetic field’. Earth has a magnetic and a geographical north, or the North Pole, in other words. The top of Earth is the geographical ‘North Pole’ and the bottom is the ‘South Pole’. All magnets have their north and south poles, just like earth’s

magnetic field. The magnetic north pole has crept northward by more than 600 miles since the early 19th century, and scientists have found that it is still creeping northward about 40 miles per year. Rewind back to the 20th century, where it only moved 10 miles per year, which makes it a 400 percent increase. Right now, the magnetic north pole is has moved 11 degrees from the geographic North Pole. At the moment it’s located in northern Canada, about 600 km from the nearest town: Resolute Bay, population 300. The earth is overdue for a magnetic pole change by almost triple the normal amount of time. That means that while the normal time between pole reversals is 200,000 to 300,000 years, it’s been about 780,000 years since the last one.

The magnetic north pole has been creeping northward – by more than 600 miles (1,100 km) – since the early 19th century, when explorers first located it precisely. It is moving faster now, actually, as scientists estimate the pole is migrating northward about 40 miles per year, as opposed to about 10 miles per year in the early 20th century.



So how do we know the earth’s magnetic field even flips? When the sea floor spreads and the lava cools into basaltic rock (which is slightly magnetic), the rocks have an imprint of earth’s magnetic field after it cooled down. This ‘flip’ does not happen overnight. It’s gradual, taking thousands of years to happen. Will pole reversal be the end of mankind? “It won’t kill us, but the effects will be noticeable,” said Ms. Giron, an eighth grade science teacher. The pole reversal is going to affect us in ways we might not have even thought about. “The very simple thing is we won’t be able to use a compass anymore because it would point south. The weakening of earth’s magnetic field would mean that we would be more vulnerable to solar flares. That would affect the power, phones, computers, and satellites. The military uses satellites for Global Positioning Systems, so even they would be affected,” said Ms. Giron. Generally speaking, this pole shift would affect almost everything we use. “It will affect our communities because we’re going to have to go old-fashioned since a lot of technology will not work,” said eighth grader Monica Martinez. According to NASA, the magnetic field will not completely disappear during the flip, so we would never be unprotected from sun flares and their extreme amounts of UV radiation. If we had no protection against solar flares, radiation would have killed 50 percent of the people exposed within 60 days of the flare without medical attention. Thankfully, even if it did disappear, earth’s thick atmosphere would be protection enough against it. The magnetic field won’t might not disappear, but that doesn’t mean it won’t go haywire. “Theoretically speaking, the [magnetic] poles could point east and west because of how it’s a slow shift,” said Ms. Giron. That means that your compass could soon enough be pointing towards Hawaii. Even though the changes the shift would bring would be big, the effects would not be catastrophic. Nowadays, we have technology that could warn us if anything dangerous was about to happen. If anything, we should look forward to such a rare thing. Who knows? Maybe someday your compass might be pointing south!


Is it kids just being kids or something worse?

Research proves that bullying has an effect on teenagers. What’s being done to lessen the effect?

Have you ever seen someone being pushed around in the hall and just walked away? Have you seen a mean post about someone else and never told anyone? Do you think bullying is a form of violence? Do you do anything to stop it? Bullying is a major issue that affects one out of four students, and it peaks in middle school. Bullying is the act of intimidating weaker people but in order to be considered bullying, it must meet certain requirements. There must be an imbalance of power, which means a person uses their strength or popularity to hurt another person on purpose repeatedly. People start bullying others for different reasons including gender, race, belief, or the way someone looks. Sometimes people become bullies for fun, revenge, to be mean, embarrass someone, or just because their friends are doing it. Bullying can be divided into four categories: physical, verbal, social, and cyber bullying. According to BullyingStatistics, males are more likely to be involved in physical bullying than girls because they have testosterone which makes them more aggressive. Physical bullying is when a person uses physical acts, such as kicking or damaging possessions, to hurt another person. Verbal bullying is when a person uses to hurt someone such as threatening or teasing. Social bullying is when a person is humiliated in front of others. According to Bully Blocking, a website that is a bullying and social resilience resource, girls prefer indirect methods such as verbal and social bullying more than physical bullying. Cyber bullying is bullying that occurs using technology. According to Enough is Enough, a website that makes the internet

safer for children, nearly 43% of teens have experienced some type of cyber bullying. People use text messages, emails, social networking websites, and chat rooms to threaten, harass, embarrass, or hurt another person’s feelings. Many times the bully is anonymous so the victim never knows who sent the mean messages. According to Ms. Castaneda, one of our assistant principals, if a teacher thinks someone is being bullied or is being a bully, they report it to an assistant principal because it is not their job to deal with this kind of situation. The assistant principal interviews the victim, bully, and other students in the class. If the assistant principal sees a pattern in the bully’s behavior, he/she can call it bullying. The victim can be sent to the counselor for help, while the bully’s parents are contacted. Once the meeting is set, the bully must sign a bullying contract saying they will not repeat the behavior. If they do not keep their word, they will receive consequences such as switching classes, changing campuses, and even a citation depending on how bad the bullying gets. In the end, bullying has its effects on teens. About 160,000 students don’t go to school every day because they fear

being bullied. According to Mrs. Charles, one of our counselors, victims receive poor grades and have a higher chance of dropping out of school. It lowers selfesteem which could lead to depression, eating disorders, and addiction to drugs and alcohol. Bullying is one factor that can lead to suicidal thoughts and is linked to some school shootings. So what can we do to prevent things like this from happening? If you or someone else is being bullied, you should tell a teacher, counselor, or principal. Eighth grader, Emily Tovar, said, “If I saw someone being bullied, I would try to help the victim by standing up for him/her and I would tell the bully what he/she is doing is wrong. I would also tell an adult so the victim can get help.” If you are being cyber bullied, save the messages, write down the time, and tell your parents. If you are being threatened, you should tell the police. “I think people should think about what they are going to say to others before they do, keep their hands to themselves, and just be nice,” said seventh grader Dianne Coto. Bullying is something that shouldn’t be ignored but taken seriously. Make sure you stand, not get involved in bullying. Remember the golden rule of life: treat others like you would want to be treated.





A day of love from past to present Thank St. Valentine when you’re out shopping for gifts for those you hold dearly


still is. Traditions have not changed much over time, but more money is certainly spent. Statistics show that during the year, women buy 75% of chocolate, but on the days and minutes before Valentine’s Day, men make 75% of the purchases. Why chocolate? From the moment chocolate was discovered, it was considered valuable, divine, and decadent, so what better gift for a loved one? Another present given on Valentine’s Day are Valentine’s Day cards. About 150 million cards are sent out each year, and most are sent by women. Here at North Shore, people are certainly planning on buying chocolates, flowers, and cards for friends on Valentine’s Day. “For Valentine’s Day I just buy chocolate for all the people I love,” said eighth grader Kimberly Rosacia. Valentine’s Day is very special to almost everyone, and the gifts people give to each other make it even more special. “I’m getting my girlfriend something special, not something that just anyone would give her,” said seventh grader Christopher Cardenas. Valentine’s Day is a day for love and friendship that started off with a rocky beginning. So, when you’re out buying a gift for a special someone, don’t forget about the person who started everything—St. Valentine.


Who knew that a day full of love could have such a hard beginning? A day that began with the death of a saint now carries on as a day to celebrate love and happiness. Valentine’s Day started off as an ancient Roman tradition as a festival called Lupercalia, which is a fertility festival dedicated to Faunus, the Roman god of Agriculture, and the Roman founders Romulus and Remus. Priests would sacrifice a goat for fertility and a dog for purification. Some of the goat hide was ripped in to strips, dipped in sacrificial blood, then the priests would take to the streets, gently slapping both women and crops with the goat hide. Roman women welcomed the touch because they believed it would make them more fertile in the coming year. The single women in the city would place their names in a pot, then men would draw a name, and they would be paired for a year, which would often result in marriage. Later on, when the Romans were in the middle of a war, the emperor passed a law which declared that young men could not marry, because it would be easier to send soldiers to war who did not have to leave wives or families behind. However, a priest named Valentine, who was devoted to God and the Sacrament of Marriage, continued to

perform marriages in secret. He became a haven for young couples seeking marriage. Later, he was discovered and sentenced to life in prison. When he was in prison, he took it upon himself to convert the emperor in hopes of reversing his unfair decree, but the emperor became further agitated and sentenced him to death. While awaiting his death sentence to be carried out, he met and fell in love with his jailor’s blind daughter. Valentine prayed for her, and because of their love and his devotion to God, she regained her sight. Then, when the time came for Valentine to be put to death, he wrote her a note as a last act of love, and gratitude for her kindness. He signed it, “From your Valentine,” an expression still used today. After he died, supporters of Valentine would show their love by casting flowers upon his cell window. Much has changed since Valentine’s death, but we still celebrate a day for love on his death day. Many things have happened since then, which led to how Valentine’s Day is now. According to History. com, in the middle ages, Valentine’s reputation skyrocketed in England and France. It was believed in England and France that February 14th was a day for love. The first written love note didn’t appear until after the 1400’s, but a Valentine’s Day greeting card was really popular, and


Final bell is not the end of the work day

Fillies director and assistant director put in long hours to prepare girls for competition by REAGAN NUNEZ

Eighth graders Veronica Alejos, Ariel Zaragoza, and others hold their line as they practice here after school. Right now the girls are lined up in their signature stance and are ready to lead off into a palm movement.

Seventh grader Bethany Luna positions her hands and focuses on the director’s instructions so she can do the movement correctly. Dance choreography is not as easy as it looks. (Left) Seventh grade reading teacher and Fillies Asst. Director Ms. McWilliams goes over their current dance and the girls’ arm placements. Competition day is coming up and things are getting strict and so is she.

(Left) English teacher and Fillies Director Mrs. McComb teaches the Fillies a move in the dance they are currently working on for a competition in the school cafeteria. The contest that these girls are in is very competitive so hard work gets the job done.

Eighth grader Ariel Zaragoza practices her “low v” which consists of a “dig” which is in the dance they’re performing for their upcoming contest which will be at Magnolia High School on February 16.

Eighth grade officer Mireya Torres takes over practice from Mrs. McComb in the cafeteria. The dance instructors teach their officers how to become a leaders; one way is by having them take over practices.


A BOOK OPENS A WORLD Discover the fascinating world in the pages of a good book

by SARA HINSHAW-HATTEN Everyone reads whether it is a text message or a novel. We read signs on the road and articles in the newspaper. So why do students hate reading? In Pakistan alone only 54 percent of people over 15 know how to read and they fight for the chance to learn. Here in the United States, 99 percent of people 15 and older know how to read. Yet it seems like some students think reading is the worst possible torture. Some of the people I interviewed have talked about their reasons for not liking reading at all. They say they don’t like reading books because they would rather watch the movie and have the whole story on screen. I have several arguments against that. One is that when reading you don’t just watch a story like you’re on the sidelines. You can’t know that their heart is thumping 100 miles a minute when the army comes to meet them on a screen. All you see is them staring at the enemy. Fascinating. Another way this doesn’t seem as good as reading is it doesn’t have your own take of the story like in my mind almost every awesome character has red hair even if the book describes them differently. Reading also gives you a lot of brain power. In an article I




found on Persistence Unlimited that talked about 26 benefits of reading, it talked about how reading enhances your memory. People who read often can remember the tiniest details that they find in a book because they are so interested. It also helps your reasoning skills when you read about people that use different tactics to win an argument. You can later use these same strategies in the real world. While I don’t fully understand why people don’t like reading I can admit that I probably am not the best judge. I happen to love reading because I can use my imagination. I love the thought of being able to do some of the things that people in my books can do like being able to fight a whole army to find my sister, or fly on a dragon over a battlefield with my brother. I use my favorite characters from books as my role models for my life, such as Clary from the Immortal Instruments series (An awesome red-head by the way) and Max from the Maximum Ride series (A very sarcastic fighter). So, at times you may hate reading I believe that it is the best escape from our daily lives. I think that the only reason people don’t like reading is because they haven’t found the right book. You just have to find the best world for you and you can live there whenever you want.



“I like the imagery because when I read it feels like I’m somewhere else.”

“I don’t like reading because you have to use your imagination. I’d like a movie instead.”



WHAT KIND OF WEBSITES “Loremposto et a volupta tiissimus. “Loremposto et a volupta tiissimus. “I think that Facebook and Twitter Event et autatur alis endest, ute ea Event et autatur alis endest, ute ea SHOULD BE BLOCKED cus ATquamHarum aut autation exeroshould becus blocked because people quamHarum aut autation exero can argue and cause commotion.” coremquo con peditioreni aut quodi coremquo con peditioreni aut quodi SCHOOL? delitent enditio rrov” delitent enditio rrov”



8TH GRADE STUDENT JONATHAN RESENDEZ ON WHATEVER TOPIC 7TH GRADE “Loremposto et a volupta tiissimus. think that we’re teenagers Event et autatur alis“Iendest, ute ea we are old enough to be cus quamHarum autand autation exero coremquo con peditioreni aut quodi responsible by not going on any delitent enditio rrov” bad websites.”

IS INTERNET FILTERING BLOCKING OUR ACCESS TO EDUCATION? Easy access the internet at school can sometimes not be such a good thing for students by KENNY MA In 2000, the Children’s Internet Protection Act, or CIPA, required that it be mandatory for schools and public libraries to protect students from watching harmful, inappropriate, and offensive images on the Internet. The First Amendment protects a person’s freedom of religion, speech, and expression, so it is said that the Children’s Internet Protection Act, was a violation of the First Amendment. On, an educational site sponsored by Education World Incorporated, critics claimed that filtering technology is inconsistent and unreliable, that it does not help students’ access informational resources, and that it prevents students from learning how to properly evaluate online resources. I believe that internet filters can help students here by


keeping them on task. According to, a news site that is sponsored by The Washington Post, younger students watching educational shows like Blue’s Clues and Sesame Street can improve their problem-solving skills and school readiness. Blocking websites can make a kid more focused on their work, rather than playing video games or visiting social networking sites. An internet filter provides better productivity and allows kids to go online without having to be watched by an adult. Computers can help students by giving them information online, but many social websites, like Facebook and Twitter, are usually blocked at school because they are social networking sites, not informational. Blocking a website can filter out any misleading, harmful sites, so students can get useful information for

their projects. School administrators block websites because they want to protect children from viewing hazardous and explicit images. If the school didn’t block websites, many students would take advantage of using the computer inappropriately. We should still have internet filters, but it should be less restrictive. There are many ways to resolve this problem. Students should get assigned homework that requires them to make a movie or a graph at home, and then show it to a teacher on Moodle. For older students, they could video an experiment and explain why it happened. The younger age groups should be able to watch educational shows on YouTube to improve their education. Supervising the students is a simple way to keep the students safe. What do you think?

TEACHERS AND GUNS: Perspective Are schools doing HOW BAD CAN IT BE? their part to protect Texas school districts arm teachers in wake of shooting by CINDY MAI Can you imagine what it would feel like to lose your best friend? Not like getting into an argument and unfriend them on Facebook, but really lose them. On Thursday, December 14, students at Sandy Hook Elementary School not only saw their life flash before them, but saw their friends and teachers get shot or even killed by a man named Adam Lanza. To prevent a situation like this from ever happening again, each state’s authorities have been going back and forth about whether or not to allow citizens to be armed at places that are gun-free zones, like churches, schools, hospitals, etc. If this were to be passed, would it do or more harm than good? States from all over the country, including Texas, are already debating whether or not to allow teachers and administrators carry guns inside a school. “The only way to stop a bad guy with a gun is with a good guy with a gun,” said National Rifle Association (NRA) Vice President, Wayne LaPierre. Others argue that guns have no place in a school. If this bill was to be passed, things could get out of hand. I mean, what would happen if a careless teacher didn’t secure his/ her gun(s) well enough and a student gets his/her hands on it? Or a teacher has a mental illness and decides to use their gun? On the other hand, teachers would have the ability to protect his/her students when a psychopath comes shooting inside a classroom. Teachers and guns. Guns and teachers. Are these going to be a good mixture? Some states like Utah have already taken action, by allowing all teachers to carry a weapon in all of their school districts, and over the break, approximately 200 educators were trained how to use a gun for free. Not only are the districts in Utah permitting this, but last October, one district in Texas named Harrold Independent School District started to allow their educators to be armed in the classroom

also. “I think it’s appropriate for teachers to conceal a gun only if they went through the proper training and have served in the military, but for the other teachers, I don’t think it’s appropriate because it would be easier for a student to take a gun away from them than a former military member,” said Mr. Killough, an ESL Specialist. “There is a huge difference between having trained, certified and commissioned law enforcement officers who are full-time, career public safety professionals that are armed and assigned the duty of protecting students and staff versus having teachers, custodians, cafeteria workers and other non-public safety professionals packing a gun in school with hundreds of children,” said Kenneth Trump, who is president of the National School Safety and Security Services. On Tuesday, Jan. 15, the National Education Association, the nation’s largest teacher’s union, backed President Obama when he made proposal to have more officers/police on campus rather than having the teachers and administrators be armed, but not everyone was happy about that idea. The National Rifle Association (NRA), who proposed the idea of arming teachers, kept criticizing Obama because they wanted more guns at school. I, for one, think that Obama’s plan will be the smarter choice because it is less likely for a student to grab a gun from a policeman than taking it from their teacher, but some teachers are/were involved in the military. These teachers have been trained for a situation like this, and it would be a smart idea if they were armed. We currently have about five teachers that were/are in the military, including Mr. Burke (served in the U.S Army for 15 yrs), Mr. Statum (current serves in the U.S. Army - 14 yrs), Mr. Killough (served in the U.S. Navy for 4 yrs), Mrs. Daniels (served in the U.S. Air Force for 4 yrs), and Mr. Webster (served in the U.S. Army for 4 yrs).



“No, because if they have a gun or any sharp object a student might use it to threaten somebody.”

“It depends if they know how to use it and are responsible... then it’s a good idea.”




by EMILY LIM On Dec. 14, 2012, a tragedy occurred in Newtown, Connecticut. Twenty-six people, six adults and twenty children, were shot to death at Sandy Hook Elementary. This all transpired because the school’s security was not prepared for this kind of scenario. People, including myself, probably now ask themselves this question. What if this happened to me? Though after this incident passed, many schools began to upgrade their own security and protocols. Even here, at North Shore Middle, we are taking action in improving our security. I said that schools are now increasing their security, but do you know what kind of improvements I am talking about? In San Antonio, school workers have the choice to take free self-defense classes from a local gym in order to take down potential killers. Back in Connecticut, numerous school districts have already installed surveillance cameras, buzzers, and now lock the front doors of all schools. The, a site sponsored by the Clarity Digital Group, mentions that out of Natick District’s eight schools, only one had a buzzer and camera system before the Sandy Hook Shooting. During the winter break however, all schools received installations of locks and buzzers. Here at our school, we have surveillance cameras around the entire building, and now all classroom doors are locked. Though this all sounds like that it is quite beneficial for our safety, some people would care to disagree. Some people completely support the idea of developing stronger school defenses, but others don’t. Several people complain that it is a waste of money to increase our security if it is probably never going to happen again. Others argue that something like Sandy Hook will take place once more, and that we should be prepared for something like it. This world has turned darker, and we are no longer as safe as we once were. Basically, I approve of the many things schools are doing to ensure the safety of students. I hope that we continue improving security measures in every school. As I have mentioned, we are not completely what do you think we can do to protect our schools? VOLUME 3 ISSUE 3 • FEBRUARY 2013 13

Mustangs dominate Alice Johnson Seventh graders put on a clinic versus the Hornets at home

by TAALIYAH PORCHIA On Jan. 17, the 7th grade boys A basketball team played the Alice Johnson Hornets at home with the Mustangs holding a record of 1 win-2 losses. As Coach Davis put out his starters Avery Smith, Isaac Cerda, John White, Shamar Clark, and Ishmael Brown, he told them who they were guarding. As Smith lined up for the jump ball, the Mustangs won possession and went in for a lay-up. After the Mustangs scored, they quickly manned up and stole the ball and scored another lay-up. Offensively, the Mustangs post players were one of their main strengths with their rebounding. Avery smith, Isaac Cerda, and Shamar Clark continually scored points. Throughout the first quarter, the Mustangs kept up a quick and effective offense and a smart defense. Alice Johnson players, on the other hand, hadn’t been making any good passes or staying with their man. They had 5 turnovers by the end of first quarter. As a result, the Mustangs ended the first quarter with a score of 17-4. In the 2nd quarter, Coach Davis subbed in a new 5 who were: Thomas Davis, Christian Briscoe, Cameron Rodgers, Terrance Helaire, and Benny More. This group was shorter in size so they were quicker than the first. In the 2nd set Alice Johnson’s defense got better and tried to stay with the Mustangs. Christian Briscoe passed the ball quickly to the shoot-

ing guards Thomas Davis and Cameron Rodgers. Overall the Mustangs’ 2nd team of offense had great movement from the shooting guards and the low post (guards are small people post are big people). Christian Briscoe and Cameron Rodgers were great shooters and made good layups and 3-pointers. “I believe that our team does better on offense because we like it better and it’s a quicker pace and plus you get your own little time to shine. So what’s not to like, you know?” said 7th grader Cameron Rodgers after the game. But the Hornets slowly began to slack off on defense and didn’t give much effort. Taking the opportunity, the Mustangs scored more buckets which gave them a 26-point lead. At the end of the 2nd quarter, the Mustangs had a 30-4 score. Alice Johnson didn’t have much improvement and continued to make the same simple mistakes and as the game went on they showed poor effort. During halftime, Coach Davis said, “Well guys there’s not much to say when you have 26-point lead so keep up the good work you look good out there. We are going to stick with the full court press and 50[zone defense].” At the start of the 3rd quarter Coach Davis subbed in Avery Smith, Shamar Clark, Benny More, John White, and Terrance Helaire. The Mustangs continued to play great in the second half. The crowd

encouraged the Mustangs by saying, “Let’s finish this guys it’s almost over!” The Mustang cheerleaders also added spirit and excitement to the game by shouting, “Clap it high! Clap it low! Come on ‘Stangs let’s GO! GO! GO!” As they got great feedback from the crowd, the Mustangs continued to play well by making smart passes, communicating on the court, taking good shots, and great rebounding. But somehow the Hornets got a steal and scored a 3-pointer. The Mustangs came back and put away the quarter with a score of 42-7. In the last quarter, Coach Davis subbed in Isaac Cerda, Benny More, Christian Briscoe, Cameron Rodgers, and Terrance Helaire. The Mustangs continued to work hard and not give up. Points were scored by Isaac Cerda Christian Briscoe, Benny More, and Cameron Rodgers. Every Mustang hustled and played hard. The Mustangs finished off a great game with a score of 46-10. In conclusion, the Mustangs had a great win because of their smart defense and lighting fast, effective offense. The way the Mustangs looked on the court showed how their coach works with them by making them run the same plays repeatedly to become quicker and smarter players. The Mustangs continue to strive to get ready for the big game by having good teamwork, working hard, and never giving up and that is was makes us champions.



7th grade boys A team vs. Crosby 36-39 L vs. Null MS 33-35 L vs. Aguirre 42-41 W vs. C.E. King 64-35 W vs. AJMS 46-10 W vs. GPMS 47-45 W vs. WAMS 62-32 W vs. CMS 60-52 W Record: 6-2

Seventh grader John White jumps to block a shot while Isaac Cerda blocks out during the fifth game of the season here on Jan. 17. The Mustangs won with a score of 46-10 thanks to a tough defense and a fast offense.


7th grade boys B team vs. Crosby 45-24 W vs. Null MS 39-12 W vs. Aguirre 52-30 W vs. C.E. King 38-18 W vs. AJMS DNP vs. GPMS 9-9 W vs. WAMS 48-27 W vs. CMS 48-51 L Record: 6-1

Mustang defense sets up big plays, leads team to victory against Yellow Jackets Eighth graders have big first quarter, blow out Galena Park by VICTOR DAVILA & ULISES SALAZAR


On Jan.24th, the Mustang 8th grade A team boys faced the Galena Park Yellow Jackets. “[Based on practice], the team should have an outstanding defensive game, because good defense leads to easy baskets,” said Coach Atkins. Going into the game, the Mustangs had a record of 3 losses and 2 wins. The starters for the game were Jaylen Thomas, Devonte Singletary, Patrick Davis, Bryant Badie and Chase Middleton. “I have prepared for this game by attending all my practices and working with my teammates,” said Jesus Frayer. “Teamwork helps us win because it will be possible to get easy shots,” said Andrew Bolden. The game started when Chase Middleton tipped the ball to the Yellow Jackets, but they missed their shot, and the Mustangs got the rebound. Bryant Badie put up the first points on the board when he sank a 3-pointer. Throughout the rest of the first quarter, the Mustangs were showing off their defensive skills, which set up more opportunities for shots that the Mustangs were sinking. Badie was proving to be a play maker, scoring 2 3-pointers, and also making some blocks down

the court. The Yellow Jackets finally made their first point of the game from a free throw, making the score 13-1. The Mustangs kept up their guard, and just kept on getting rebounds that set up their plays, and created shots. The score at the end of the first quarter was 19-1. When the second quarter started, the Mustangs picked up right were they left off, taking advantage of the Yellow Jacket’s unaggressive defense. However the Yellow Jackets started to get aggressive, stealing the ball, and driving to the basket for layups. The new aggressive defense was helpful, but it was also creating more fouls. As the game went on, the Mustangs were getting various offensive rebounds, which helped them tremendously to score. The Yellow Jackets, however, started to make more shots, finding the open man. The defense of the Mustangs was becoming more aggressive towards the end of the quarter, where they weren’t giving up any easy shots. Chase Middleton was a play maker in the second quarter making shots and he also had a nice block at the end of the quarter, where he didn’t even have to jump. The score at the end of the half was 27-11.

Eighth grader Jaylen Thomas blocks one of the opposing team’s players who’s trying to pass the ball while Bryant Badie reaches in to disrupt the pass here Jan. 24. With smart plays and good coaching, the boys pulled off a big win in district play.

During halftime, Coach Atkins and the players went over to the white board. He drew the offensive team’s plays of what they had done so far. “They’re going to start pushing you J.T. and Singletary-2 is going to opposite low block,” explained Coach Atkins. As the timer counted down, Coach Atkins explained more plays to the team. The timer sounded and the team went back out on the court. The third quarter started with both teams showcasing an aggressive defense, which made it hard for either team to score. However, Roddrick Coffman still managed to make a 3-pointer with a defender in his face. “Hands up, Hands up!” yelled Coach Atkins as the Mustangs were trying to get the ball back into there position. The Mustangs kept drawing fouls, and making their free throws. The Yellow Jackets were starting to get less aggressive on defense, which lead to the Mustangs landing more shots. The Mustangs continued to take advantage of the less aggressive defense, all the while, the Yellow Jackets were making some shots, but not a frequently as the Mustangs. The Yellow Jackets had to earn their points, because the Mustangs’ defense was not giving up any shots. The final score for the third quarter was 42-17. The fourth quarter started with Chase Middleton blocking a layup and taking the ball back to the other side of the court and finishing with a floater. The Mustangs were maintaining their aggressive defense with steals by Patrick Davis and Bryant Badie. Both teams seemed to get more aggressive on offense as the game progressed to the final minutes. Devonte Singletary made a 3-pointer after getting open with 2:34 left in the game. The Mustangs scored once more with 1:30 left. “We helped each other put points on the board and kept the other team from putting points on the board,” said Badie. No team could score in the final minute and a half, because both teams’ defenses were extremely aggressive. The Mustangs had won; the final score being 55-28. The Mustang’s defense set up most of their plays, which in the end lead them to victory. The Mustangs played with good offense and defense, which helped them win with such a big lead. VOLUME 3 ISSUE 3 • FEBRUARY 2013 15


Lady Mustangs

DEMOLISH Lady Hornets with defense An aggressive offense and a stingy defense lead to big win

On Jan. 14th, the 7th grade Lady Mustangs A team took on the Alice Johnson Lady Hornets here. Going into the game, the Lady Mustangs had a record of 1 win and 2 losses, giving them motivation to get the job done. “Defense is going to be a big factor in the game because Coach Wait always told us that defense wins games,” said seventh grader Zoya Hicks. The game started when Summer Hubbard won the jump ball for the Mustangs and the crowd exploded with excitement. The Mustangs, however, could not capitalize and lost possession of the ball. “You have to watch the ball!” yelled Coach Wait. When the Mustangs got the ball, they were driving to the basket, and sinking shots, but as the Hornets drove down the court the Mustangs constantly were trying to regain possession, and Hornets couldn’t score. “Blue ball, I don’t want anything coming behind us; I want everybody on a girl, got it?” said Coach Wait during a timeout. Mickayla Berguin and Summer Hubbard were constantly making buckets and were big playmakers. The Mustangs were also showing amazing defense, stealing the ball multiple times, leaving the Hornets scoreless the first quarter. When the quarter ended the Mustangs had the lead 4-0. The second quarter began when Asjai Robinson drove to the basket and sank her shot making the score a 6-0. The Mustang defense was having a huge impact on the Hornet’s scoring. The Mustangs kept stealing the ball and driving to the basket aggressively, constantly making it difficult for the Hornets to score. The Hornets, however, kept driving to their basket, but to no avail, they kept missing shots and turning the ball over. Still the Mustang’s main playmakers were Mickayla Berguin and Summer Hubbard, both sinking most of the teams’ shots. The Hornets hadn’t even scored yet, and the Mustangs were keeping the ball, for the most part in their possession. The Mustangs just kept on adding to their lead, and at the end of the first half the score was 14-0. During halftime, the Mustangs were


talking about passing the ball more and setting up more plays. “My feelings are hurt, because will [a play they need to execute] is not right,” said Coach Wait as she went over the play on the white board. “Things I’m not seeing, that I need to see. We have to be ready to pass more,” she said, as she went over some more plays. The third quarter started with Asjai Robinson driving to the basket and sinking a shot. The Mustangs picked right where they left off with amazing defense, and not giving the Hornets any easy shots. Both teams, however, couldn’t make a basket, and the ball kept being turned over. The Mustangs kept driving to the basket, but just couldn’t sink a shot. The Hornets, also kept driving to the basket, but just kept missing the shots, or getting the ball stolen by the Mustang’s defense. The Mustangs were dominating on both offense and defense, which kept their lead. Neither of the teams could score for the rest of the third quarter, leaving the Mustangs with a



lead of 16. The final score for the third quarter was 16-0. The fourth quarter began with great defense from the Mustangs, stealing the ball, and driving to their basket, but couldn’t score. As the Mustangs kept up their defense, the Hornets were driving to the basket constantly, and were looking more aggressive on both offense and defense. The Mustangs, however, were determined not to let them score. The Mustangs were beginning to not look as focused, as they were before. The Hornets were able to make their first shot of the game, making the score 16-2. This made the Mustangs get more aggressive on offense, yet they couldn’t score. There were 23 seconds left on the clock as Summer Hubbard drove to the basket, took a shot, but missed. A Hornet rebounded the ball with 7 seconds left in the game and she took off, sprinting down the court, and she took a shot, the buzzer rang, but the ball was in the air. Swish! She had just made a buzzer beater, and everybody went crazy. Even though the Mustangs had won with a huge lead, everybody was still going crazy because the buzzer beater was amazing. The game ended with a score of 16-4. After the victory against the Hornets, the Mustangs record changed to 2 wins 2 losses. Throughout the game the Mustangs tried to keep possession of the ball and showed aggressiveness on offense. “We did good, but we could have done better,” said Mickayla Berguin, who was a big playmaker on both offense and defense. Overall the Mustang’s defense was a big factor in winning the game.

Seventh grader Ali’yah Harrison maneuvers herself defensively in an attempt to knock the ball away from the Hornet point guard, throwing off her rhythm so the Mustangs could get the ball here on Jan. 14. A solid defense led to the Hornets only scoring two baskets during the whole game.

Lady Mustangs participate in first ever


Eleven talented North Shore players take on a big challenge

by LEAH MAXWELL Do you love basketball? Are you just dying to meet some of the greatest players of the NBA such as Blake Griffin, Kevin Durant, James Harden, and Chris Paul? Well, that’s what some of our own Lady Mustangs will be doing since they participated in the Gatorade All-Star Jam Session Invitational, Jan. 26 at Strake Jesuit High school. Now, you’re probably wondering what the Gatorade All-Star Jam Session is. It is an annual get together where fans can meet current and former basketball greats. Over the course of a week, the NBA showcases its 3 leagues (NBA, WNBA, NBA Development), celebrate the athletes, and gives back to the Houston community through various NBA Care events. As for the fans, they can shoot, slam-dunk, and dribble all day while they compete in skills challenges and collect free autographs from NBA players and legends, and for the first time since 2006 the Gatorade All-Star Jam Session is back to Houston. What makes this special here is that this was the very first year that North Shore competed in the 2013 Gatorade All-Star Jam Session Invitational. This invitational was a tournament that was held at Strake Jesuit High school with a total of 32 schools (16 boys and 16 girls) in grades 6-8 in the Houston area. This tournament began Jan. 26 with the 1st and 2nd rounds. The teams who were fortunate enough earned the right to play in the SemiFinals and Finals the evening of Jan. 28. The winners in the Men’s and Women’s division were invited to be recognized by the NBA at the NBA All-Star Jam Session and even meet the greatest basketball players ever, and even if you didn’t win, participants were given tickets to the Jam Session and still given the chance to meet basketball greats. The lucky Lady Mustangs contestants were 8th graders such as myself, Madisyn Francis, Socorro Rodriguez, Taylor Crouch, Armani Lenor, Megan Strickland, Claudia Martinez, TaAliyah Porchia, and Deja Montgomery and 7th graders, Kaylan Hardeman, Summer Hubbard, and Aliyah Harrison. We got to the quarterfinals but lost to Lanier Middle School, but we were happy just to be participating. “It’s an honor to be competing because not every school gets to do this, Cunningham isn’t even doing it, so that just goes to show you how lucky we are to be participating,” said 8th grader Claudia Martinez. It’s all thanks to Coach Gordon that these ladies had this opportunity to express their

talents out. “I feel like I have come very far in my basketball career and made improvements. I just want to thank Coach Gordon for her coaching, it has helped a lot,” said 8th grader Deja Montgomery. She really has had an impact on these players. She has drove them to success and taught them to not settle for average but for greatness. “I signed these girls up because the athletic director from the district sent out a flyer and it looked cool to play against girls outside of the school,” said Coach Gordon. Maybe that’s why Coach Gordon signed them up for this. To give them something challenging to succeed, but the real question is why Mr. Drexler gave her permission to go through with this. “A primary question I ask when teachers or coaches ask me to sign kids up for something…in Coach Gordon’s case is how is it going to be good for the girls, and I think this has definitely been good for our Lady Mustangs,” said Mr. Drexler. Here at North Shore, we are given new opportunities to try something new or achieve something new. This year it just happens to be the Lady Mustangs who get a new activity to participate in. Hopefully this is just the start of a new activity North Shore can strive to become successful in.

NS SCOREBOARD 8th grade boys A team vs. Crosby 40-53 L vs. Null MS 34-41 L vs. Aguirre 46-34 W vs. C.E. King 33-53 L vs. AJMS 53-33 W vs. GPMS 55-28 W vs. WAMS 51-35 W vs. CMS 37-54 L Record: 4-4 8th grade boys B team vs. Crosby 34-49 L vs. Null MS 30-32 L vs. Aguirre 35-26 W vs. C.E. King 28-23 W vs. AJMS 35-9 W vs. GPMS 51-23 W vs. WAMS 41-40 W vs. CMS 33-44 L Record: 5-3

NORTH SHORE BASKETBALL SCOREBOARD 7th grade girls A team vs. Crosby 5-69 L vs. Null 12-9 W vs. Aguirre 9-31 L vs. C.E. King 15-36 L vs. AJMS 16-4 W vs. GPMS 18-23 L vs. WAMS 27-17 W vs. CMS 44-21 W Record: 4-4 7th grade girls B team vs. Crosby 2-21 L vs. Null 6-7 L vs. Aguirre 10-6 W vs. C.E. King 14-15 L vs. AJMS 11-9 W vs. GPMS 2-19 L vs. WAMS 11-10 W vs. CMS 13-10 W Record: 4-4 8th grade girls A team vs. Crosby 32-41 L vs. Null 31-37 L vs. Aguirre 42-17 W vs. C.E. King 64-31 W vs. AJMS 36-18 W vs. GPMS 43-35 W vs. WAMS 28-17 W vs. CMS 27-49 L Record: 5-3 8th grade girls B team vs. Crosby 23-20 W vs. Null 28-20 W vs. Aguirre DNP vs. C.E. King 36-11 W vs. AJMS DNP vs. GPMS 13-26 L vs. WAMS 28-14 W vs. CMS 46-34 W Record: 5-1

Track tryouts were held on Feb. 12! Come support your Mustangs as they sprint toward a district title. All home meets will be held at the 9th grade campus. VOLUME 3 ISSUE 3 • FEBRUARY 2013 17


Are you getting the

BEST POSSIBLE SOUND? There are lots of headphones out there...we take a look a two



Have you ever seen someone with the “Beats” headphones by Dr. Dre or the Bose headphones by Dr. Amar G. Bose? The slim mechanisms are appealing in design and performance and it’s pretty common now to see someone wearing headphones. Did you know that the headphone revolution started in 1964 when Dr. Amar G. Bose, a professor of electrical engineering, set out to find the perfect, easy way to listen to music at its best? Dr. Bose, who graduated from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, was not happy with his stereo speakers and he worked until he invented his first pair of headphones. The Bose headphones, also known as the AE2 audio headphones, are priced at $134.95 and are available in black or white. The Bose features comfortable ear cushions, durable materials, and the AE2i model has an inline remote for calling and comes in a small bag for safe and easy travel. The earpieces also have a mesh bud inside for the protection of the speakers and have larger earpieces for aroundthe-ear listening. The larger earpieces go around the ear to block out small noises like talking. The headphones also have an expandable headband for people with larger heads. In addition, the headphones have a wire that protrudes from each earpiece which leads to the plug. The trustful Bose brand has excellent performance when listening to music; they also have a rich bass and ok treble. The Bose are a really good brand that you can depend on for your music needs and they only weigh 4.9 ounces. “I really like these [Bose] headphones, they are sold at a good price, and are really comfy,” said eighth grader Juan Nunez. The rival to the trustworthy brand Bose is none other than Beats. This brand, created in 2006 by rapper and producer Dr. Dre, Jimmy Iovine, the Chairman of Interscope Geffen A&M Records, and manufactured by Monster, also has an impressive ensemble. The Beats Solo have a well-built, sleek design that is comfortable and stylish. The headphones are built

out of durable, flexible material which is almost impossible to break and is reinforced with a metal strip they are also priced at $199.95 and come in black, maroon, purple, blue, white, red, and green. The headphones come with a carrying pouch and an extra cable that connects the Beats to your device, with a remote microphone. The headphones have a good bass and an impressive treble. The Beats headphones also have padding on the earpieces, and are collapsible, which means they fold into themselves. Unlike Bose, Beats have only one wire that protrudes from the left side that is thicker than the Bose wires and they weigh only 5.6 ounces. Both brands of headphones are reliable and very good, and they are also very popular. I personally prefer the Beats over Bose. The Bose are still a really good brand and are cheaper than the Beats and slightly lighter than the Beats.

Unbreakable construction

Earbud audio phones If you’re an in-ear type of listener, here a listing of reliable earbud/in-ear earphones.

Around the ear design

Foldable, easy for storage

Polk Audio Ultrafit series Sennheiser Adidas series Beats Tour series by Dr. Dre

On the ear design

Bose IE2 earphones Klipsch S4 Earbuds Sony EX series Monster DNA series Skullcandy earbud series



Foldable, easy for storage

Catching Fire heats up HG series Second part to the Hunger Games doesn’t disappoint by CRYSTAL ORTEZ Catching Fire, the second book of the Hunger Games Trilogy, is in production and will be released on Nov. 22, 2013 on the big screen. This book was published on Sep. 1, 2009, by Scholastic Press and it’s written by Suzanne Collins. Catching Fire has been on New York Times Best Sellers list for about 4 months and I think that it’s going to be a great movie because the book has a lot action that catches our attention. In the book, Katniss and Peeta are going to the games for their second year in a row, called to the arena because every 25 years the Capitol hosts an event called the Quarter Quell. This year they make the districts send past victors, and since Katniss is the only female victor, she is forced to go again. The arena is a clock

and every hour that passes they experience a new disaster…all this in the middle of a rebellion. At the end, the book leaves you hungry for more and makes you want to read the next book in the series, Mockingjay. I wonder how certain events are going to look in the movie with the technology and computers producers have these days. I also want to see the arena and the disasters that happen every hour. Since this book is really popular and people liked the first movie, the producers of the first movie are working hard to make the second part to satisfy their fans. I rate this book 3 out of 4 stars because I like the action and romance. What I didn’t like is that at the end it leaves you wondering what is going to happen next, but that makes you want read the next book and anticipate watching the movie in November.

Great apps for your phone or tablet Here’s the skinny on what’s hot and free for your android or Apple device by ALENY GUAJARDO

PICSART PHOTO STUDIO Good and free photo editing has always been a challenge until the Google Play store introduced Picsart, the free and complete photo editing app. With Picsart you can professionally edit an average photo into a work of art. Picsart is the world’s #1 photo editing app on the Android and Kindle with over 10,000,000 downloads and rated 4 ½ out of 5 stars. I personally like the app because it has a large variety of options to make my photo exactly the way I want it and more. I rate Picsart 5 out of 5 stars.

SHAZAM Have you ever had a song that you loved blasting on the radio but didn’t know the name of it? Worry no more because with Shazam you can instantly find the name of any song you’d like within a few seconds of your time, and the app will also give a demo of the song, the official YouTube video and lyrics. Shazam has over 400,000 downloads and is rated 4.5 out of 5 stars. I rate the app 4 out of 5 stars because Shazam has a special feature called lyric play that plays the lyrics while the music is on like karaoke but the feature isn’t available for all songs and some of the lyrics are incorrect or off track.



It’s a real trouble to buy music on iPhones and iPods because it’s not free and most people just go on without music because they don’t want to pay for songs that will only be cool for a couple months. I can’t agree more, because I would hate to waste my money on a song that will be annoying in less than a month. Thankfully Pandora gives you free unlimited music and not just the music you wanted but the music you didn’t know you wanted. With Pandora you can type in a new station and it will play you songs related to the station you chose. You can have up to 99 stations of great music of your choice. Pandora has about 950,000 downloaders and is rated 4.5 out of 5 stars. I rate Pandora 3.5 out of 5 stars because the song you chose is hardly played and

Many people don’t know about Tango, and those who do often wonder why bother with Tango? Skype is way better. But I beg to differ, with Tango your contacts are automatically synced in to the app and you can chat with people with special features such as effects, video, pictures, and voice messages. You can video call as well which also comes with special features like filters and mini games. Tango is free and has been downloaded about 440,000 times and was rated 4.3 out of 5 stars. I rate the app 4.5 out of 5 because sometimes the call doesn’t inform the called until the caller hangs up.


Next issue

What’s coming up in our

We’ll take a look at the ACT Explore test, the results, and what it means for you.

NSMS Choir and Band will compete in UIL competition soon. We’ll get the scoop and results.

Guilty? Innocent? Aquitted? Mr. Banks’ eighth graders will head downtown to battle a court case in mock trial.



Eighth graders: The second semester has arrived. Are you getting prepared for high school? Are you ready for the challenges?


Thefts in school...are you keeping your things safe?

The Mustangs versus the Wildcats in basketball action. The winners and the losers.

Track season is starting. Who will dominate this season? We’ll cover the meets, the stars and the coaches. LIKE US! Scan this with your smartphone to see the North Shore MS Journalism Facebook page.

Our next issue will post on our FB page in May 2013 20 FEBRUARY 2013 • THE ‘STANG EXPRESS

February 2013  

Check it's our third issue of the year!